Working with the automation process designer

Kentico EMS required

Features described on this page require the Kentico EMS license.

This chapter describes the process designer, a built-in tool that provides a visual representation of marketing automation processes. The designer allows you to define the steps that implement the functionality of automation processes.

Accessing the process designer

To open the process designer for an automation process:

  1. Open the Marketing automation application.
  2. Edit ()the process that you want to design.
  3. Switch to the Steps tab.

The following image shows the appearance of the designer for an automation process consisting of the Start, Send campaign email and Finish steps. The steps are connected by transition lines. The direction of the arrows indicates which way the process moves forward.

 Process with Start, Send newsletter issue and Finish steps


If your graph doesn’t fit into the designer area, click an unoccupied area of the grid and drag to expose additional free space.


Windows Communication Foundation must be configured for the advanced workflow designer to work.

Standard steps

You can use the following types of basic steps to design automation processes:




Basic approval step. Allows designated users or roles to decide whether the process continues to the next step.


Splits the process into two branches based on a condition. The process automatically transitions to the next step according to the result of the condition.

See:  Defining automatic decisions


Splits the process into any number of branches based on a set of conditions.

  • If exactly one condition is met, the process automatically continues through the given branch.
  • If multiple conditions are fulfilled, designated users need to manually choose the next step.

See: Defining automatic decisions

First win

Splits the process into any number of paths based on a set of conditions. The process automatically continues through the branch whose condition is met first.

See:  Defining automatic decisions

User choice

Splits the process into any number of branches. Designated users need to manually choose the next step for each contact in the process.

See: Defining user choice steps


Halts the process for a specified amount of time before continuing to the next step.

See: Adding wait steps


Represents the end of the process.

Action steps

You can also embed actions into processes. When a contact reaches an action step in a process, the system automatically performs the given action.

Action step


Change contact account

Adds or removes the contact from an account.

Change contact group

Adds or removes the contacts from a contact group.

Delete contact

Deletes the contact currently going through the automation process.

Import to Salesforce

Replicates the contact into a lead in a target Salesforce organization.

You need to have Salesforce replication set up for your websites to use this action.

Log custom activity

Logs a custom activity for the contact.

Newsletter subscription

Subscribes or unsubscribes the contact from a newsletter.

Send transactional email

Sends a transactional email (for example subscription confirmation) to any address.

Send marketing email

Sends a marketing email (i.e., newsletter or email campaign) to the contact.

Note: When performing this action step, the process automatically adds the contact as a recipient.

Set contact property

Inserts a new value into one of the contact’s properties (fields).

Culture-dependent data used in the ‘Property’ value of this action need to be entered in the ‘en-US’ culture format. For example, the MDY format should be used for dates (12.21.1989).

Set contact status

Changes the contact’s status.

Start process

Triggers a different marketing automation process for the contact.

Based on the recurrence settings of the target process, this action can result in multiple unnecessary instances of the process running concurrently.


If your developers create custom actions, you can add them through the designer as well.